• Like a bad penny, debt always turns up…

    unless we change how we interact with money, of course!

    The Bad Penny is dedicated to two pursuits: getting out of debt and staying out of debt! It recognizes that frugality and caring for our planet go hand in hand, and that our unsatiated need for stuff is hurting us in so many ways.

    Easier said than done!


    I am not a finance professional. I write about the world as I know it, and my advice may not be the best course of action for you! Please seek qualified advice for your particular situation.

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It’s not quite regifting, but…

Merry Christmas! I hope your time with friends and family was most fulfilling, and that you received the gifts you were really hoping for! We celebrated here at our house with my parents-in-law and my sister-in-law, her husband, and their two kids. It was a lot of fun seeing the kids enjoying their presents, and the food was really yummy! Especially the lefse, which I’m still perfecting!


Right now I’m sitting in my living room. And there are three -yes, three garbage bags of wrapping paper, ribbons, and toy packaging sitting in front of me. On top of that, there’s another bag in the kitchen full of the disposable plates and cups we ate off of (all given to us when we moved in to our new home.) And one more bag – the only bag I’m not completely disgusted with – a bag of pop cans, foil, and plastic to be brought to our recycling center.

I tried to figure out what I could do to reduce this trash before I filled the bags. I kept tissue paper and boxes that weren’t completely destroyed, and recycled what I could. Obviously I still have a lot left, and I hate the fact that this trash is simply going to a landfill to sit. But I don’t know what else to do with it. Since the majority of the presents were for the kids (2, 5, and 7) the paper is completely unusable for rewrapping presents.

So help me readers! What are some ways that you reduce the trash that comes with Christmas? I’d especially love to hear what you do when you have family who isn’t as concerned about it as you are. After all, not only are bags of wrapping paper sitting in a landfill taxing to the environment, but they are taxing to your pocketbooks as well – you have to pay to have it removed.  And with my family coming next weekend, we’ll have more to dispose of, so I need some ideas!